Crab Cake Banh Mi Sandwich
Classic banh mi, one of the most delectable sandwiches known to humankind, is built in a crisp baguette spread with mayonnaise, and contains pâté, ham and roasted pork, along with strips of pickled vegetables, cilantro and hot chiles. But there are countless variations on this Vietnamese staple. Some are filled with chicken, others with beef, and a Louisiana po’ boy-style banh mi contains fried oysters. Miniature crab cakes are another option — what’s not to like?
- Serves: 2 persons
- 8ounces crab meat
- Salt and pepper
- 1tablespoon cornstarch
- 2tablespoons chopped scallions
- ½cup mayonnaise, preferably homemade
- ¾cup fresh soft bread crumbs
- 2tablespoons lime juice
- 1teaspoon grated ginger
- 1teaspoon fish sauce
- 1teaspoon brown sugar
- 1medium carrot, cut into 4-inch julienne strips
- 1small cucumber, cut into 4-inch julienne strips
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 2sandwich rolls or 1 small baguette, cut in 8-inch lengths, warmed until crust is crisp
- A few lettuce leaves
- Sliced jalapeño peppers
- A few cilantro sprigs
- A few basil sprigs
- A few mint sprigs
Step 1Place crab meat in a small bowl and season lightly with salt and pepper. Add cornstarch, scallions and 2 tablespoons mayonnaise and mix thoroughly with a fork. Form mixture into 4 balls of equal size. Roll balls in bread crumbs, and flatten into cakes about 1/2-inch thick. Pat more crumbs onto the surfaces of each cake, transfer cakes to a plate and refrigerate until ready to cook.
Step 2In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, ginger, fish sauce and brown sugar. Add carrots and cucumbers and toss to coast. Set aside for 5 minutes to pickle slightly.
Step 3Set a small skillet over medium heat and add oil to a 1/4-inch depth. When oil is hot, carefully add crab cakes, using a spatula. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes on each side, until nicely browned and crisped. Remove and blot on paper towels.
Step 4Split the sandwich rolls lengthwise and coat interior surfaces with remaining mayonnaise. Lay lettuce leaves on one side of each sandwich and top each with 2 hot crab cakes and the pickled vegetables. Sprinkle with jalapeño slices and cilantro, basil and mint sprigs. Serve sandwiches immediately.